Adam Aldred will tomorrow become the first competition law specialist practising at the UK’s regional bar, as he departs Addleshaw Goddard for Kings Chambers.
Aldred says he expects the decision to base his practice at Kings Chambers will encourage other UK competition barristers to follow suit. Kings has offices in Leeds, Manchester and Birmingham,
“While competition court hearings are held in London, many of UK’s largest and most active commercial companies are based in the north of England,” says Aldred. “I want to create a centre of excellence of competition law in the regions and I want Kings Chambers to be at its epicentre.”
Aldred was a partner at Addleshaw Goddard’s Leeds’ office. He joined the firm in 2001 and since then has had a hand in some of the country’s most significant competition litigation work.
He acted for 2 Travel Group in the Cardiff Bus case, where the Competition Appeal Tribunal granted his client the country’s first follow-on damages award. He also represented Eden Construction in securing a signifi- cant fine reduction before the CAT for its role in a recruitment cartel.
Aldred says becoming a barrister was his original intention when studying law, but this was postponed when he travelled and pursued a legal career away from his native Australia. Even so, he became a solicitor advocate in 2000, and discussions with Kings Chambers started over two years ago.
“I came to the conclusion that if I didn’t join the bar now I’d regret not doing it,” he says. “At a law firm, be- coming more senior in the profession comes with more responsibilities in terms of management and administration. It will be very enjoyable getting back to my first love which is actually doing the work and being a lawyer.”
As well as litigation, Aldred will also offer independent advice on merger control, distribution strategies, dawn raids, dominance and state aid.
He has experience on a number of significant merger cases, including the clearance of the merger of British Salt and New Cheshire Salt Works, which marked the first time the Competition Commission reversed a provisional decision against a merger due to competition issues.
Colin Griffin, King’s Chambers’ chief clerk says: “Adam joining chambers is a tremendous coup for Kings and a great testament to our reputation as one of the country’s leading sets. Adam joining allows us to offer services from a leading practitioner in a new specialist area for chambers.
“We are delighted that Adam has chosen Kings.”
Aldred says he already has two briefs waiting for him when he starts work tomorrow, and other opportunities in the pipeline.
Aldred began his career at Norton Rose in London and spent eight years in the commercial litigation team at Hammond Suddards (now Squire Patton Boggs) before moving to Addleshaw Goddard.
He was Addelshaw’s sole competition partner in Leeds. The firm has one partner in Manchester and one in London.
First published on the Global Competition Review website, 11 August 2014
By Katy Oglethorpe 11 August 2014